Pope Francis responds to Notre Dame fire: 'We unite in prayer with the people of France'

Pope Francis responds to Notre Dame fire: 'We unite in prayer with the people of France'

Pope FrancisPope FrancisFormer pope ill after trip to Germany: report Group says China hackers infiltrated Vatican ahead of expected talks McCarthy calls on Pelosi to condemn 'mob violence' after toppling of St. Junipero Serra statue MORE tweeted Tuesday that Catholics around the world stand united after a fire severely damaged the iconic Notre Dame cathedral in Paris.

In a message Tuesday morning, the pope wrote that sorrow felt by those mourning the cathedral's near-destruction would be transformed into hope for rebuilding.

A devastating fire Monday afternoon destroyed the 12th century cathedral's roof and famed steeple, though it reportedly left parts of the interior, including the church's historic stained-glass windows, largely undamaged.

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The cause of Monday's blaze has not yet been determined, but the centuries-old building was undergoing restoration that is thought to have possibly contributed to it.

The editor of Crux media, a Catholic news service, told Hill.TV on Tuesday that it was unlikely Francis would visit Notre Dame during Holy Week this year.

"He's supposed to do the Holy Thursday Chrism Mass, the foot-washing ceremony, the Good Friday Via Crucis procession at Rome's Colosseum, and then, of course, the high Easter Sunday Mass," John Allen Jr. said.

"So it is deeply unlikely. However, having covered Francis for six years, the one thing that I can tell you is that the fact that something is unlikely doesn't mean it's not going to happen," he added. "So all I can tell you is stay tuned."